KSNF/KODE — The United States Postal Service has announced price increases due to operating expenses and a lack of revenue.
The increase in prices is expected to take effect on January 22, 2023. Prices for standard 1oz. letters will increase from 60 cents to 63 cents. Domestic postcards will increase from 44 cents to 48 cents and international postcards and letters will both increase by 5 cents to $1.45.
The Postal Service’s expenses have exceeded its revenues year after year since 2007. According to the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), the Postal Service is able to remain in business by increasing its debt and missing required federal payments funding retiree pension benefits, according to the U.S. Government Accountability Office.
USPS has lost $87 billion over the past 14 fiscal years, including over $18 billion since the beginning of the pandemic. The Postal Service did receive $10 billion in COVID relief funds from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, also known as the CARES Act, but according to the GAO, the USPS business model is unsustainable, and all retiree health benefits would be depleted by 2030 if a major restructuring doesn’t take place.
In March of this year, the U.S. Senate passed a major financial relief bill that would fund USPS with $50 billion over the next decade and would require retirees to enroll in a federally sponsored health insurance plan — but like the CARES Act relief, it still may not be enough for the Postal Service to stay afloat.